Researchers warn second wave of COVID-19 to hit Denmark in September

Source: Xinhua| 2020-07-30 23:55:03|Editor: huaxia

COPENHAGEN, July 30 (Xinhua) -- Denmark can expect to be hit by a second COVID-19 wave this September, according to findings presented in a press release by the University of Southern Denmark (SDU) on Thursday.

Based on simulations using a scientific method of calculation rooted in the methods of particle physics and developed in association with colleagues from the University of Lyons in France, the SDU projected that around the 35th to 37th weeks of this year, Denmark risks being hit by a new wave of COVID-19 infections as strong as the first that hit the country in the spring.

However, the simulations also predicted that the coronavirus should subside after approximately two weeks.

"Our simulation shows that we will face a similar number of infected as in the spring if we take the same precautions of social distancing and introduce the same restrictions as during the first wave. If we do not do that, we risk even more infections," said Francesco Sannino, professor of theoretical physics at the SDU.

The simulations could also predict the development of COVID-19 in Denmark and other European countries for the rest of 2020.

The researchers have found that the coronavirus will peak in Denmark in the 38th to 40th weeks of this year and then begin to fade around the 40th to 42nd weeks, providing precautions and restrictions are the same as in the first wave.

The simulation is based on COVID-19 data from around the world and especially from the first wave. It relies on the number of infected people, including the so-called "dark number" -- those who are not registered.

Countries included in the model are Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Slovakia, Spain, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

"Our model can be used by states, companies, citizens and the financial market to prepare and implement necessary local and global measures before the next wave hits," said Professor Sannino.

A premise of the model is that there is no so-called "herd immunity," when so many people become immune to the disease that it cannot spread as rapidly, or at all.

The predictions come as Danish Crown, a company dealing primarily in processing of pork and beef, has been hit with an unprecedented outbreak of COVID-19 in one of its slaughterhouses in Denmark, which employs 900 workers.

On Tuesday, at one of the company's slaughterhouses in Ringsted, 67 kilometers southwest of Copenhagen, three cases of COVID-19 were confirmed by the company and it immediately followed government guidelines to contain the virus.

However, the number of infected had increased sharply to 16 and on Thursday doubled to 32.

"The new cases of infection are contact persons for people who were found infected earlier in the week, but it is of course serious," Jens Hansen, press manager at Danish Crown, said on Thursday.

The total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Denmark has risen by 91 within the last 24 hours to 13,725. The number of deaths increased by one to 615 in the same period, according to the Statens Serum Institut's daily update issued on Thursday. Enditem